Expedia to expand by buying Australias Wotif for USD 658 million

Published Date : Jul 07, 2014

Looking to penetrate further into the Asia-Pacific region, online travel-booking site Expedia Inc. has agreed to buy Australia’s Wotif.com Holdings Ltd. for USD 658 million. The deal reflected a 25% climb in Wotif shares, the highest since December last year. With more and more people booking vacations and business trips online, travel websites have ventured into acquisitions with the aim of seeking revenue. 

Market analysts predict that compared to the USD 107 billion in 2011, internet sales may reach a whopping USD 151.9 billion by 2016.  It is also believed that this buy-out may result in competing offers from rivals such as Connecticut-based Priceline Group Inc.

The Expedia-Wotif deal comes after the Australia-based travel site hired Goldman Sachs as its defense adviser in April. With a new wave of international competitors, the 14-year-old company had been suffering significantly. 

The US-based travel website company was founded by Microsoft in 1996 and operates across 60 countries. Its first acquisition was Travelscape for USD 89.75 million in the year 2000. Expedia Inc.’s headquarters are in Bellevue, Washington.